Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Secrets & Sharing Soda's Books of the Year (2013)

With the end of the year less than 24 hours away, it's time to look back on this year's reading and announce my picks for Secrets & Sharing Soda's books of the year.

In previous years, I have set specific reading goals (last year, I aimed to read 1500 books, for example), but this year I decided to give myself a break and just read, without worrying about reaching a particular number. In the end, I wound up reading 729 books that I had never read before, and an additional 210 which were repeat reads. Here is how the 729 break down by category:

From these books, I have selected favorites in five categories based on four main factors: literary quality, kid appeal, my personal feelings about the book, and its suitability for use in library programs and book talks. (This last factor was not weighed as heavily as the others.) Each category features a top favorite and three honorable mentions, because I could never choose just one favorite book! Links will take you to my reviews, if available, or to my posts about the book in my story time blog and on Goodreads.

Favorite Young Adult Contemporary Novel
by Elizabeth Eulberg

Honorable Mention:

Favorite Middle Grade Novel
by Kirkpatrick Hill; illustrations by LeUyen Pham
(Henry Holt & Co.)

Honorable Mention:

Favorite Chapter Book
by Graham Salisbury, illustrated by Jacqueline Rogers
(Wendy Lamb Books)

Honorable Mention:

Favorite Easy Reader
by Grace Lin 
(Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

Honorable Mention: 

Favorite Picture Book
If You Want to See a Whale
by Julie Fogliano, illustrated by Erin E. Stead
(Roaring Brook Press)
Honorable Mention: 

Thank you so much for following Secrets & Sharing Soda through its third year! I look forward to starting year four tomorrow. In the meantime, take a look back at my favorite books of 2011 and my favorite books of 2012. Happy New Year!
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